Corey and I finally made it to the “Rolling Rally”. The Alewife T station parking garage was full, and we couldn’t find any decent on-street parking in the area. We ended up parking on a random side street in Arlington and then walking to the Alewife T station… not a bad walk, maybe 10 minutes or so.
We got on the Red Line at Alewife, and got off at the Charles/MGH stop. This was right in the thick of the action towards the end of the land part of the parade route. We then walked up Cambridge Street a ways, stopping at varoius places to check out the crowd and the surroundings. We waited around there until the Duck Boats carrying the Red Sox arrived, watched as they went past, and then followed along with the massive crowd as the amphibious vehicles headed to Storrow Drive and the Charles River. We hung around on the Boston side of the Longfellow Bridge for a whlie, then gradually made our way across the bridge. We waited on top of the bridge until we could see the boats enter the water, then we continued over to the Cambridge side of the bridge. We hung out on there until the boats finished their loop around the Charles River Basin, then we ducked into the Kendall/MIT T stop and headed out. All in all we were there from around 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The pace of the parade was a bit faster than originally planned – they added extra length to the parade to help spread people out a bit more, but it started and ended at roughly the times planned for the original, shorter route. So the Duck Boats went past a bit quicker than I’d hoped, and I didn’t have as much time to frame good camera shots.
The crowds were absolutely the biggest I’ve ever seen in Boston. There was a veritable sea of bodies flowing down Cambridge Street after the Duck Boats passed. And that was just towards the end part of the parade route – we didn’t even go up to see the crowds near the beginning at Fenway, or the middle near the Common. There were a few places where you could get close enough to see clearly, but for the most part, the crowd was 6-8 people deep. I had to hold my camera up as high as I could to take any decent photos most of the time. There were a few drunks to be seen, but by and large the crowd was quite orderly. We witnessed several morons climbing on the bases of the Longfellow Bridge at various locations, and also some kayakers getting right in the path of the Duck Boats as they were traveling through water under the Longfellow. Other than that, however, there were no fights, no vandalism, no police intervention necessary – at least as far as I could see.
It was great to be able to witness this piece of history and to be able to celebrate with 3.2 million other Red Sox fans. To see all of the pride, excitement, spirit, what-have-you… just awesome. The crowds were full of cheer and enthusiasm, and as dumb as it might sound, it was really cool when we got “The Wave” going continuously up and down the Esplanade and onto the Longfellow Bridge.
So if you’re wondering what it looked like, check out the photos. Or, as the sign said,
(There are no captions yet, but I’ll try to add some soon, as some of the photos probably need an explanation…)
(I also have a few short video/audio clips that I shot on my camera, which I’ll post when I have some time. Update: they are posted now!)